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Things to carry with you on a MTB Marathon ride

Riding a MTB out in the woods is a big pleasure. It gives a feeling of freedom and adventure! But what happens when things do not go according to plan? Imagine yourselves being too far away from home and you have a mechanical failure or even a crash. The wonderful day out could turn into a disaster, causing a lot of pain, trouble and moaning from your ride mates. 

All these can be avoided by carrying a few things that would enable you to tackle most issues. The equipment and parts needed are summarized below.

Essential parts

  1. GPS capable mobile phone
  2. Money
  3. Tire repair kit (1-2 Spare tubes, Tire levels, tire patch kit and Pump)
  4. Tire Foam
  5. Mini Tool kit (Multi tool with chain tool and chain missing link)
  6. Electricians’ tape/ Zip ties
  7. Chain Lube
  8. Drop hanger
  9. First Aid Kit
  10. Food/water

Important but not as essential parts

  1. Single use cramp relive cream
  2. Antiseptic spray
  3. Wet wipes
  4. Pliers
  5. Extra Valve Cores
  6. Power Bank
  7. Plastic Gloves
  8. Plastic Bags
  9. Area Map
  10. Lights
  11. Brake pads
  12. Folding chainsaw

A good mountain biker should always carry all 10 essential parts with him/her and if doing an epic ride all important parts as well. But what is the use of all these things? How can we carry all of these?

A good quality cycling rack sack with approximately 6-8 liters of storage space and an extra 2-3 liter water bladder is essential. Another option is to have 1 or 2 bags attached to the bike and utilize the jersey’s pockets as well.

A brief explanation for the use of all essential parts will be given below

1. Mobile phone

You never know when help will be needed or a terminal mechanical failure will occur. A phone will be handy to conduct someone or guide you to the nearest point of civilization! Furthermore it is useful when you missed a turn and want to return back to your track. Make sure you always start the ride with a fully charged battery

2. Money

It is always handy to carry some cash. Very often we run out of supplies or just need a hot cup of coffee.

3. Tire repair kit

Every mountain biker’s nightmare. A flat tire totally ruins the fan. Spare tubes compensate by allowing you to fix the bike and continue.

4. Tire Foam

In the event of a small puncture or tube replacement, the Tire foam will help preventing  small punctures until the end of the ride.

5. Mini Tool kit

Very often bolds get loose or the chain breaks unpredictably bringing our ride to a halt. These are small repairs that only take a couple of minutes to fix. Multi tools enable us to sort these issues.

6. Electricians’ tape / Zip ties

Many people would wonder what the need for an electricians tape or Zip ties is. The answer is that things on a bike (i.e. bottle cages, bags) could break or tear due to a crash.  They need to be fastened back into place and these two are a simple and effective fix.

7. Chain Lube

Very often we cross water streams or get caught in the rain. The chain starts making annoying noises and we need to stop it. A chain lube is the answer. 

8. Drop hanger

An underestimated part of the bike, whose job, is to break in order to protect the frame. A spare one is needed so that in the event of a hit that caused the hanger to break, it can be replaced and the ride will continue.

9. First Aid Kit

A crash… either us or a close mate might need immediate medical attention. Until help arrives this is the only thing that will help

10. Food / water

Never underestimate the body’s need for energy and hydration. Without fuel the body might collapse. Therefore for rides more than 2 hours it’s good to consume a snack of about 100g which contains 60g of carbs. Furthermore 500ml of fluids mast be consumed as well.

 Riding a mountain bike is something that should never be done alone. It is safer to have at least one mate that shares your passion and thus push each other to enjoy more. The above things have minimal weight but they could be shared making the rack sacks lighter and easier to carry. For epic rides it is advisable to carry the important parts as well. It will enable the riders to travel much further.

Feel free to conduct SMBC for more details and advice at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. We promise to reply shortly and if possible write an article. Join our team for more extensive information and practical cycling lessons. 

Coach Chris

UCI Level 2 Coach
CCF certified instructor